I recall that moment I first approached Monument Valley from the highway. Suddenly, in front of me, an iconic Hollywood view materialized. In that thrill of recognition I realized both the logic and the hubris of Hollywood’s decision to use such dramatic scenery as a movie backdrop.
Film westerns don’t do Monument Valley justice. Only moving around the monuments and studying them at leisure and length affords a visitor the proper appreciation for nature’s ancient winnowing process, the grander geological drama that is present in stone and enveloping sky.
Painting the changing moods of provocative places, like Monument Valley, is a pleasure and a challenge. At the top of this blog the desert heats up in a late morning scene. An afternoon view follows this, the subject stylized in form and color. This more graphic approach continues in the third and larger work. The three pastels are painted on a pale yellow, olive-green, and black surface, respectively. Each color underpainting helps establish and express a different mood. As with all my work, rich hues mingle with muted colors in a search for visual rewards and emotional meaning.
View more artwork at Brad Faegre Fine Art